Location and Topography
Bury lies to the north of Manchester and borders Lancashire. The Borough's land is undulating but incised drained by the valleys of the Rivers Irwell and Roch. The Borough's highest point is in the north, on the plateau of Holcombe Moor, reaching 418 metres above sea level on Bull Hill.
The River Irwell flows south through the borough, before turning west at its confluence with the River Roch. These river valleys not only provide an important habitat for wildlife, but also act as a corridor through which species can move on migration, or as their distributions change.
Bury has one of the highest concentrations of ponds in Greater Manchester together with a number of important lodges and reservoirs. The Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal also runs through the Borough.
Terrestrial habitats include important areas of moorland (upland heath and blanket bog), as well as broad-leaved clough woodland, such as Ringley Woods, much of which is ancient. Over 15% of the borough is semi-improved neutral grassland, with significant areas of unimproved acid and neutral grassland.
Bury's ponds and lodges support a diverse range of aquatic flora and fauna, including five species of amphibian, numerous damselflies and dragonflies, and many species of breeding and wintering wetland birds. They also provide important foraging areas for bats with nine species recorded in the borough.
Otter signs have recently been found on the River Irwell, and it is hoped this beautiful mammal will decolonise some of its former haunts over the coming years.
Bury remains a stronghold for farmland birds such as Skylark, Tree Sparrow, Grey Partridge and Barn Owl which live alongside Brown Hare, Rabbit and Fox.
For more information about Bury's countryside and wildlife visit: